Saturday, April 20, 2013

Update on Fr. Matthew Despard: No Plans for Suspension

Fr. Matthew Despard

Thanks to “Witness” blog for an update on Fr. Matthew Despard, the priest who wrote the book “Priesthood inCrisis”, in which he alleges that there have been decades of homosexual abuse and bullying of seminarians and priests, and then complaints about the problem have been ignored throughout that time period. (See my previous post.)

[See also yet another good summary of the Fr. Despard story at Witness.]

Apparently, any plans to suspend Fr. Despard because of the allegations contained in his book – plans which the diocese had denied anyway, have been abandoned.

The “Witness” post points to an article at the Herald which notes that

Joseph Devine, Bishop of Motherwell, issued a notice this week stating no action would be taken against Father Matthew Despard, who has alleged sexual misconduct has been rife for decades in junior seminaries where teenagers train for the priesthood.

A Church source said: “Matthew Despard had all the aces. His take on it has been ‘let them come for me’.

“No-one will sue him because they won’t want a can of worms opened. Secondly, what will they sue him for? They’ve silenced him for now, which they might think is sanction enough. But, the book is still out there.

“They’re terrified this will blow-up further. There are people mentioned in Despard’s book Joe Devine will not want to have dragged into any inquiry…”

On the “Witness” blog post, author Montfort concludes:

Now, I ask: Bishop Devine, when will you begin to investigate the "gay mafia" and take action against it to protect the purity and sanctity of the priesthood and the church in Scotland. Let us be honest, the diocese is continuing a COVER-UP. 

Of course, a bishop could begin an investigation without telling the general public. Still, if Fr. Despard is not being sanctioned, is the Diocese of Motherwell then saying that his allegations are true, at least in part? And since the information in Fr. Despard’s book is now public knowledge, a statement that the allegations were being investigated would certainly seem to be warranted.

We all know there is a problem in the Church with homosexual behavior. There is too much evidence available to deny it. Even if there were no homosexual behavior occurring in amongst the clergy, there are priests and bishops who speak out in favor of “gay marriage”, or who condone homosexual behavior by allowing “gay” Masses, or allowing their parishes to participate in “Gay Pride” events. With the advances being made by the homosexualist political agenda, it seems the time is well past for the  Church to speak strongly and unequivocally on the moral evil of homosexual behavior.

Pray and fast. 

See also yet another good summary of the Fr. Despard story at Witness.


  1. The Herald article is totally disingenious. It is widely known that the Diocesan Tribunal has been shelved in favour of a much more serious canonical process. The defendant in this whole procedure is not in fact the priests mentioned in the book, as some have alleged, but Despard himself. He is the one who faces disciplining for making unsubstantiated and defamatory claims in the book. I'm bemused at the spin that's been put on this story as if Despard is now off the hook.In fact, he is in very serious bother. If I were a betting man I would say that Despard will be out of the parish within the month with the process of laicization beginning some time after that. I am also very confident that the truth about this troubled character will be exposed for all to see. My advice to this blogger is not to back a man who is soon to be exposed as an utter fantasist. Listen to poeple who know Despard and the kind of parish he is running. This guy is a joke of a priest.

  2. And if I were a betting woman, I'd probably agree with you that he'll be out of the parish - and he'll probably be facing all kinds of reprisals that we'll never know about.

    You keep telling me not to "back" him. I am not sure that is an accurate description of my posts on him. The thing I am trying to keep in focus is the fact that there IS homosexual behavior and bullying in the priesthood, it has had an effect on vocations of men who were "straight", and something has to be done about it sooner or later.I think Despard's book makes some very good points, and I for one am not willing to call him a liar when he is describing what he says is his own personal experience.

  3. Lest we forget, it takes more than "unsubstantiated accusations" to get a priest laicized. That is a HUGE canonical penalty that is more than just paperwork. Ordained priests have HUGE protections within canon law. You can't throw that possibility around all that easily. Priesthood is not just a "job."

    Consider, for example, that neither Fr. Hans Kung nor Fr. Charles Curran nor retired Bishop Rembert Weakland have been laicized. Heck, even Cardinal O'Brien isn't under threat of laicization, and he has admitted to sexually abusing seminarians! Unless Fr. Despard has been guilty of something more serious than "telling lies" about important others, he will not be laicized.

    I know there are many who won't believe accusations like Fr. Despard's, or Michael Rose in "Goodbye Good Men," or James Likoudis in "Amchurch Comes Out," or Randy Engel in "The Rite of Sodomy, or the recent revelations of Fr. Dariusz Oko, or many others whose heads are atop their shoulders instead of in the ground (or somewhere else). They can't ALL be lying. They can't ALL be mistaken. Until the homosexual priest sex abuse scandal was revealed by secular media, all stories like Fr. Despard's were dismissed, routinely, as "fantasy." What he writes sounds credible to me, if only because there is so much "other evidence" in "other settings" that what he says isn't even surprising any more.

    I love it when someone calls someone else an "utter fantasist" while hiding behind a fake name. What irony!

  4. This just in...


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